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Wisconsin tribe wants Enbridge pipeline removed

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World Pipelines,

According to abc News, Wisconsin Public Radio, Star Tribune and the Duluth News Tribune, a northern Wisconsin Chippewa tribe is calling for 12 miles of Enbridge’s Line 5 pipeline to be shut down and removed from its tribal reservation lands after 64 years of operation.

The Bad River tribal council approved a resolution that would not renew easements for 11 parcels of land along a section of the Line 5 pipeline, which carries 540 000 bpd of crude oil, synthetic crude oil and natural gas liquids which are refined into propane from Canada to eastern Michigan.

Bad River tribal spokesperson, Dylan Jennings, claims that the pipeline threatens the tribe’s water and land. Bad River’s Chairman, Robert Blanchard, added: "We depend upon everything that the creator put here before us to live mino-bimaadiziwin, a good and healthy life. These environmental threats not only threaten our health, but they threaten our very way of life as (Chippewa)."

Bad River’s officials have called for planning to begin regarding the Line 5 removal project. The scope of work would include a health study, pipeline contents recycling and disposal, and surface restoration.

Brad Shamla, Vice President of Enbridge’s US operations, reportedly stated that the tribe’s decision not to renew easements for its Line 5 comes as a surprise to the company. The tribe and Enbridge have been negotiating renewal of the easements since their expiration in 2013.

“Our hope is that we can continue to have a dialogue and a conversation,” Shamla said. “We really want to have an opportunity to hear from the band, listen to their concerns and really work to a solution that is a win-win solution,” Shamla added.

Shamla also stressed that contrary to the beliefs of the tribe, the line is safe and is inspected at least once every five years.

While Enbridge sources have claimed that there has never been a spill on the Bad River reservation, according to abc News, Jennings said that the tribe believes that the ageing pipeline could ruptures soon.

While this action comes amidst ongoing disputes over the Dakota Access pipeline, the tribe has denied that this decision has anything to do with the protests in North Dakota.

"We stand in solidarity with the Standing Rock community, but this is a decision made by and for our community," Jennings told the Star Tribune.

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